Get Busy Living - Page 7
Photo by David Clifford
#7 Declare Your Mission
Perhaps it's a morbid thought, but don't we all wonder how we will be remembered? When we retire to the great singletrack in the sky, where the temps are cool and there's a fully stocked aid station every mile, what will our loved ones say about us?
Stop wondering and act on one of those ideas you've undoubtedly hatched on a trail run.
Nancy Hobbs will be remembered. That is for certain. Few people have done more to advance the legitimacy of trail running than Hobbs, who lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado. For over a decade, Hobbs has devoted herself to building a bridge between mountain, ultra and trail running (cleverly called "MUT") and running's main governing body, USA Track & Field. Today, as Chairperson of MUT, Hobbs helps to oversee championships, coordinate national teams and generally ensure the sport's healthy growth.
In a less visible way, Roch Horton of Salt Lake City, has been reflecting on his own legacy. On a run through the streets of San Diego in fall 2008, Horton happened upon a mosh pit of second graders enjoying recess at an inner city playground. He smiled at a group of them, off to the side, running back and forth, seemingly just for the hell of it.
"Then I realized, how many of these kids will ever actually toe the line at a local 5K, the Berlin Marathon or the Leadville Trail 100," he explains. "How many Kimballs, Meltzers, Mackeys are hidden away in those little legs, that soon decay behind a cloak of trans-fats, high-fructose corn syrup, DVDs, underfunded schools, deadbeat dads, gang life, crime or a sedentary lifestyle?"
So Horton has declared a mission: to see that ordinary kids get to express the genetic running instinct they are born with. He recognizes that there will be obstacles, but seems driven by the same determination that he has forged on the mountain trails: "How to penetrate inner city schools and/or the underprivileged is beyond my capabilities ... what I do know, is we were all kids at one time, and now our adult lives are steered by this self-propelled, foot-powered forward momentum."
One of Horton's first steps? "To encourage kids (parents, really) to expose their children to running."
What is your mission?